Five Significant Non-Trades From The 2012 Deadline

Blockbuster trades generate lots of excitement, but not all rumors turn into reality. Some of the possible trade scenarios that dominated MLBTR early on this season never actually happened. Let's revisit five of those non-trades with an eye on the coming offseason:

  1. Justin Upton, Diamondbacks – The Upton rumors have subsided, but I doubt they've disappeared for good. The Diamondbacks don’t appear to have ruled out the possibility of an offseason trade involving Upton, who has a .765 OPS since the beginning of August.
  2. Cliff Lee, Phillies – The Phillies aren’t eager to trade Lee, but moving him would create some flexibility for a team with considerable commitments to its 2013 payroll. The left-hander is guaranteed $25MM per season through 2015 and his contract includes a $12.5MM buyout for a vesting option in 2016. The Dodgers, the only team with more 2013 commitments than the Phillies, are obviously not intimidated by his contract.
  3. Matt Garza, Cubs – Garza drew considerable interest leading up to the trade deadline, but he hasn't pitched since. A stress reaction in the back of his pitching elbow will sideline him for the remainder of the 2012 season and GM Jed Hoyer expects the right-hander will return in 2013, his final season before hitting free agency. If the Cubs do trade Garza this winter they figure to have less leverage than they did in July, when he appeared to be healthy.
  4. Josh Johnson, Marlins – The Marlins reportedly sought a Mark Teixeira-like package for Johnson when they listened to offers for him midseason. He'll earn $13.75MM in 2013, the final year of his contract with Miami. Most teams can handle that kind of commitment for a pitcher coming off of a strong season (3.86 ERA, 140 strikeouts and 51 walks in 165 1/3 innings) so he'll draw lots of interest if the Marlins make him available again. It'd be a surprise if they obtained a franchise-altering collection of prospects for Johnson, however.
  5. Chase Headley, Padres – Headley, the National League’s player of the month for August, has been on an extended hot streak since the non-waiver trade deadline. He has hit .331/.369/.653 with 12 home runs in the 31 games he's played, boosting his trade value to new heights. There’s no guarantee Josh Byrnes will look to trade Headley this offseason — the Padres could look to contend — but if he does there will be a long list of GMs interested in seeing what the 28-year-old could do in a more hitter-friendly environment. Headley, who's under team control through 2014, is an offseason extension candidate.

Others such as James Shields, Cole Hamels, Jason Vargas, Carlos Quentin, Alfonso Soriano, Huston Street, Josh Willingham and Justin Morneau get honorable mentions.


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25 Comments on "Five Significant Non-Trades From The 2012 Deadline"


Sir Coyler
2 years 10 months ago

I am surprised Vargas wasn’t dealt

rich101682
2 years 10 months ago

You left off what I consider to be the biggest one: Carlos Lee rejecting a trade to the Dodgers. If that happens, the Gonzalez/Beckett/Crawford deal probably doesn’t happen, at least not in the form it did.

Gumby65
2 years 10 months ago

I agree with you on that one, but thinking BNS’ posting meant relevant players who were the primary focus of a trade, but you are dead on, Lee is to be thanked for being “Bull-headed” in more respects than one.

start_wearing_purple
start_wearing_purple
2 years 10 months ago

Eh, it probably still happens in some form. The Dodgers were desperate for a long term upgrade from Loney and the only way Boston trades Gonzalez is getting rid of other contracts.

Bob Bunker
2 years 10 months ago

If Lee accepts the deal the blockbuster still happens but Shane would not have gone to the dodgers.

notsureifsrs
2 years 10 months ago

i’ll take an upton and a josh johnson please

FAIL
2 years 10 months ago

A Mark Texieira like package? You mean they’d be willing to trade Josh Johnson in exchange for Casey Kotchman?

Bob Bunker
2 years 10 months ago

It’s funny looking at trades in which the player is traded again. For example the Braves trades all those prospects for a year of Tex and Casey Kotchman. Or the Red Sox traded Rizzo and Kelly for James Loney, Sands, Webster, and De La Rosa. Or look at all the trades cliff lee has been in

Leonard Washington
2 years 10 months ago

Wait! And the Sox got 270M in salary relief.

Bob Bunker
2 years 10 months ago

love to see the red sox get headley to play LF or DH if they don’t bring Ortiz back. Or get him to play 3B and ship out Middlebrooks for a young starting pitcher. Matt Garza could be a good pick up if Theo doesn’t want the sox best prospects.

bigpat
2 years 10 months ago

Don’t they need a 1B as well since Gonzalez is gone?

notsureifsrs
2 years 10 months ago

i know a great 1B. he plays in chicago now, though, and sort of hates our guts

whoops. at least we got a haul…

bigpat
2 years 10 months ago

I didn’t think Anthony Rizzo would have a reason to hate you guys…

notsureifsrs
2 years 10 months ago

oh yeah, him too. well, at least we still have reddick and lowrie

by the way, have you noticed how overrated sox prospects are?

Bob Bunker
2 years 10 months ago

Yes but can Headley play 1B. I have only heard of him playing LF and 3B. As for Youkilis anyone think he might come back if the Sox will fire Valentine?

TigerFan1968
2 years 10 months ago

Youkilis is the old grey mare now. Give Mauro Gomez a look. can’t hurt.

MaineSox
2 years 10 months ago

While giving Gomez a chance probably couldn’t hurt me physically, it could easily hurt the team’s chances of contending. Gomez is a AAAA journeyman DH, playing him at 1B (or anywhere) full time is a bad idea.

MaineSox
2 years 10 months ago

I would be pretty surprised if Headley couldn’t play 1B (he’s played there a tiny, tiny bit with the Padres). They also need a left fielder, so they could always use him there if he doesn’t want to/they don’t think he can play 1B.

Edit: I just noticed that it was you who originally mentioned him in LF, so I obviously don’t need to tell you that they could use him there…

2 years 10 months ago

He has played 3 innings at first base

MaineSox
2 years 10 months ago

I know, hence me saying he’s played there a “tiny, tiny bit.” But it shows that, at the very least, when they needed an emergency 1B he was their best option, so they don’t see him as totally inept at the position.

Matt Rennick
2 years 10 months ago

Byrnes better keep Headley around for the long term. To give up the team’s leader in nearly every offensive statistic would be dumb. Especially when that means you would have to rely on Jedd Gyorko to pick up the pieces. I like Gyorko and what he has done in the minors, but it’s the minors. We don’t know how well he will do in the majors, we’ve seen it go very badly (Anthony Rizzo). So I say keep the sure thing and extend Headley for a few more years at least

Beersy
2 years 10 months ago

Hindsight is always 20/20, but Huntington must be kicking himself for not dealing for Headley. The Pirates are still within striking distance, but the way Headley has been raking since the deadline, they would have been in one of the wildcard positions you would have to think.

I’m sure the new owners don’t want to start their new regime doing what the old one always did, but can you imagine what Headley could get you on the open market now after his August? Of course with a couple of key signings, and lot less injuries, I believe the Padres could contend next year, so this is going to be one tricky off season for Byrnes. But I guess that is why he is paid the big bucks.

Michael Kenny Jr.
2 years 10 months ago

$12.5 million has to be the most expensive buyout of all time. That contract is cuckoo bananas.

vtadave
2 years 10 months ago

The Padres are going to give extensions to Carlos Quentin and Huston Street only to turn around and trade Headley? Don’t think so.

Hoosierdaddy92
2 years 10 months ago

Something tells me the Tigers will take the Cliff Lee contract this offseason if the Phillies are willing to take a chance on Rick Porcello. Groundball pitcher that would do well in the NL. Lee fits the Tigers window of contention perfectly and Illytch is desperate to win it all. Verlander is a free agent in 2 years, and Cabrera is in 3 years. Fielder’s prime is likely only the next 2-3 seasons. And a 1-2 punch of Verlander/Lee is one to be reckoned with, especially with Scherzer and Fister as the 3-4. Lee could also help LHs Smyly and Crosby develop and fight for the 5th spot in the rotation.